James 2
New American Standard Bible►► 

The Sin of Partiality

1My brothers and sisters, do not hold your faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ with an attitude of personal favoritism. 2For if a man comes into your [a]assembly with a gold ring and is dressed in bright clothes, and a poor man in dirty clothes also comes in, 3and you [b]pay special attention to the one who is wearing the bright clothes, and say, “You sit here in a good place,” and you say to the poor man, “You stand over there, or sit down by my footstool,” 4have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil [c]motives? 5Listen, my beloved brothers and sisters: did God not choose the poor [d]of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him? 6But you have dishonored the poor man. Is it not the rich who oppress you and [e]personally drag you into [f]court? 7Do they not blaspheme the good name [g]by which you have been called?

8If, however, you are fulfilling the [h]royal law according to the Scripture, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF,” you are doing well. 9But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the Law as violators. 10For whoever keeps the whole Law, yet stumbles in one point, has become guilty of all. 11For He who said, “DO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY,” also said, “DO NOT MURDER.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but do murder, you have become a violator of the Law. 12So speak, and so act, as those who are to be judged by the law of freedom. 13For judgment will be merciless to one who has shown no mercy; mercy [i]triumphs over judgment.

Faith and Works

14What use is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone says he has faith, but he has no works? Can [j]that faith save him? 15If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, 16and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, [k]be warmed and be filled,” yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? 17In the same way, faith also, if it has no works, is [l]dead, being by itself.

18But someone [m]may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” 19You believe that [n]God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder. 20But are you willing to acknowledge, you foolish person, that faith without works is useless? 21Was our father Abraham not justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that faith was working with his works, and [o]as a result of the works, faith was [p]perfected; 23and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “AND ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS,” and he was called a friend of God. 24You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. 25In the same way, was Rahab the prostitute not justified by works also when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? 26For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.

[a] 2 Or synagogue
[b] 3 Lit look at
[c] 4 Lit reasonings
[d] 5 Lit to the
[e] 6 Lit they themselves
[f] 6 Lit courts
[g] 7 Lit which has been called upon you
[h] 8 Or law of our King
[i] 13 Lit boasts against
[j] 14 Lit the
[k] 16 Or warm yourselves and fill yourselves
[l] 17 Or dead by its own standards
[m] 18 Lit will
[n] 19 One early ms there is one God
[o] 22 Or by the deeds
[p] 22 Or completed

New American Standard Bible
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by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, Calif. All rights reserved.
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